If you are on keto, I am sure you have faced the same dilemma as many others who have adopted the ketogenic lifestyle. Most dairy food items are a grey area where most people are unsure if the macro quality is suitable for their keto quotas.
For someone like me, who loves dairy and dairy products, it was a challenge to discern and discriminate which dairy products are good and which are bad. Over time I have learned that a good rule of thumb to follow in this case is to always pick higher fat products and avoid the low-fat or skimmed versions of your favorite dairy products.
High-fat dairy products are permissible on the Keto diet. You may eat high-fat cheeses, creams and butter as long as there is no added sugar involved. However, some people who run a tight keto ship, claim that many foods that we love to eat on keto may not be keto friendly. Run ins with the keto police have us second guessing and asking our-selves, is cheese keto? Is sour cream keto? There are differing opinions on this matter, but at the end of the day, I advise that you include these in your diet in smaller portions and see if it affects your progress. Some things that you must keep in mind when you are including dairy in your keto regime are:
- Not all dairy is created equal
- Some dairy products are deceivingly high in carbohydrates while others may have high protein and fat
- To stay in ketosis, you must limit portions of dairy as consuming too much may throw your macros out of whack and consequently kick you out of ketosis.
So which dairy products can you eat safely staying in the optimum fat-burning mode?
Good news for cheese lovers, most cheese is allowed on a keto diet. While you can’t eat unlimited amounts, there is enough room in your macro allowance to enjoy this yummy dairy product almost daily.
Cheese is a perfect keto food since it is high in fat, has moderate protein, and is super low in carbs. It can add flavor, texture, and variety to your meals. However, not all cheeses are the same.
Best Cheese choices for keto are
- Goat Cheese
- Blue Cheese
- Cream Cheese
- Parmesan Cheese
- Parmesan Cheese
- Cheese Crisps
You may eat these cheeses in larger quantities as they have fewer carbs.
Cheese choices that are not so good include
- Canned or Spray Cheese
- American Cheese
- Yellow Cheddar Cheese
- Ricotta Cheese
- Cottage Cheese
While you may still enjoy them in moderation, these cheeses have a higher carb count and you must calculate their portions very carefully.
Heavy cream is a wonderful staple to have in your pantry if you plan of enjoying a low-carb or ketogenic lifestyle. Its versatility makes it a great way to add variety to your keto meal plans. You can add it to your morning coffee, to soups and sauces, or whip it up and have as a condiment for berries or keto desserts. Cream is a high-fat food and works well with many keto recipes and allows you to expand your keto repertoire.
Heavy whipping cream is the best option in creams which is full of energizing fats. Since heavy cream has more fat content than regular whole milk, it can be heated to higher temperatures without curdling and can be incorporated in hot as well as cold dishes.
Butter is one of the healthy fats derived from dairy. It is a necessary staple in your keto diets. Butter is low in milk proteins and is lactose-free so it is a perfect dairy item to include in your diet. Butter can be used to cook with, bake with or even used as a spread.
While butter was once thought of as a menace for cardiac health, modern research has shown that the association between butter and heart disease is very small. Butter is also one of the richest sources of butyrate and other good fatty acids in food. Butter is rich in antioxidants and is associated with lower obesity rates.
For added health benefits and most nutritional value, choose good quality organic butter. You can source this directly from dairy farmers or specialty stores. Another option could be store-bought but grass-fed butter varieties which are more accessible.
But while these dairy products are keto-friendly, they can be UN-friendly if you let go of moderation. Remember that moderation in everything is key. Like all good things in life, all these keto goodies should be consumed in moderation staying within your prescribed macros.
Author Bio: Muhammad Tayyab is a freelance writer and mostly writes about sports coaching, diet and supplements in order to help athletes achieving their goals.